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Blake And The Number 12, It's A Match!

Thursday, October 11, 2007

James Blake claimed his 12th straight win at the Stockholm Open today and set up a re-run of last year's final with Jarkko Nieminen in a Friday quarter-final.

Sixth seed Nieminen, twice a losing finalist at the iconic Kungligahallen, built a century ago by royalty, struck first with a 6-0, 6-4 thrashing of Australian Peter Luczak in Thursday's second round.

Blake then comfortably tamed the huge serve of FrankDancevic 6-3, 6-2 a day after the 22-year-old Canadian bomber had struck 35 aces in his previous win. The top seed, who now stands 12-0 at the venue, broke for 5-3 on the way to claiming the opening set, then repeated twice in the second to advance in less than an hour.

Nieminen lost the 2006 final to the event's reigning perfectionist with Blake boasting titles in 2005 and 2006.

Blake, ranked seventh and chasing a place in the year-end finals next month at Shanghai, is coming off a hot summer where he won 20 of 24 matches. But he needs to keep winning in Stockholm to improve his chances for a spot in the eight-man wrapup event.

Posted by Shelia

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